Articles Posted in FMLA

Employees have filed a class-action lawsuit against Baycare Health System Inc., a Florida hospital, citing alleged unpaid wages, retaliation and violations of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the Florida Workers’ Compensation Act (FWCA).

A woman filed a complaint on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated on May 17, 2018, in the Pinellas Circuit Court against Baycare Health System Inc. alleging that it failed to compensate employees with proper wages and benefits.

According to the complaint, the plaintiffs allege that the woman and other similarly situated individuals have suffered irreparable injury and monetary damages as a result of the defendant’s discriminatory practices of interfering with their rights to FMLA and to compensation at the statutory rate of one-and-a-half times their regular rate of pay for overtime hours worked.

The hospital allegedly failed to pay employees an overtime premium for all of the overtime hours that they worked, failed to accurately record, report, and/or preserve records of hours worked by its employees, and failed to offer employees FMLA or otherwise notify them of their rights under FMLA.

The plaintiffs request a trial by jury and seek judgment against defendant for compensation for lost wages, benefits and other remuneration, reinstatement to a prior position with back pay plus interest, pension rights and all benefits, front pay, liquidated damages, interest, costs, attorney’s fees, and further relief as the court may deem just.

Under FMLA, eligible employees may take up to twelve weeks of unpaid leave during any 12 month period, for any of four general reasons:

  1. Birth and care of a newborn child
  2. Adoption placement
  3. Care for an immediate family member (spouse, parent, or child) with a serious health condition
  4. Personal medical leave because the employee is unable to work due to a serious health condition

There are further stipulations outlined under FMLA. In order to be eligible for FMLA leave, an employee must have been employed by the employer for at least 12 months and at least 1,250 hours during the twelve months immediately preceding the leave. Moreover, the employee must work at a site where there are at least fifty employees within seventy-five miles.

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A Pinellas County man alleges he was wrongfully terminated by a timeshare sales company in Orange County while out on medical leave.

The man filed a complaint on April 26 in the 9th Judicial Circuit Court of Florida – Orange County against Hilton Grand Vacations Club LLC alleging Family and Medical Leave Act interference and retaliation.

According to the complaint, the man began working for the company in October 2016 and submitted paperwork for FMLA leave in November 2017 to care for a medical condition. He alleges he was terminated in January with an effective date of Dec. 21, 2017, for absenteeism.

He holds Hilton Grand Vacations Club LLC responsible because the company interfered with his rights under the FMLA.

Under the FMLA, it is unlawful for an employer to terminate an employee in retaliation for taking FMLA leave or attempting to exercise his or her FMLA rights.Employers are also prohibited from interfering with, restraining, or denying an employee’s exercise of his or her FMLA rights.  

To establish a claim for FMLA interference, an employee must prove the following:

  • They are an eligible employee
  • The employer is a covered employer
  • They are entitled to take FMLA leave
  • Notice of the employee’s intention to take the FMLA leave was given to the employer
  • The employee was denied a benefit they are entitled under the FMLA

In order to establish a claim for FMLA retaliation, an employee must prove the following:

  • They engaged in a protected activity
  • Adverse job action was taken against them
  • There is a causal connection between the activity and the adverse job action

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A Miami-Dade County woman formerly employed as an assistant manager claims she was wrongfully terminated for taking a medical leave.

The woman filed a complaint on Jan. 25 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division against General Nutrition Corp. alleging violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act.

According to the complaint, the woman says that in 2016 she was terminated from her employment for asking for time off due to the complications from a surgery. She claims General Nutrition Corp. failed to notify her that her leave could be designated as FMLA leave.

When you are facing a serious illness, injury, or a family medical issue, you have rights as an employee to take care of yourself and your family. This is a stressful time and you should not have to worry about being fired or demoted. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides rights and protections to employees who must take absence from work for a qualifying illness or injury.

Keep in mind that disputes regarding an employee’s termination while on leave arise quite often. Employers will claim they acted within their rights to terminate, while the employee may claim the termination was illegal because it was only due to taking leave. This is why FMLA cases require the help of an employment attorney to gather the necessary evidence and prove the actual facts of what happened.

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A Duval County man employed as an electronic technician by a federal agency alleges he faced discrimination because of his chronic medical condition.

The man filed a complaint on Jan. 10 in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Jacksonville Division against United States Postal Service citing the Family and Medical Leave Act.

According to the complaint, the man claims that on July 27, 2002, he commenced employment as an electronic technician. Subsequently, he was diagnosed with a life-long chronic medical condition on March 2014, and was later approved FMLA leave.

However, when he complained about his superior’s alleged abuse of power, and further filed a grievance for retaliatory actions, he claims he was singled out during meetings and his FMLA leave was changed from leave to leave without pay.

Sometimes medical issues arise that prevent workers from fulfilling their job duties. Important health matters should take precedence, which is why the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was enacted in 1993 to protect the rights of workers when family and medical problems arise.

Many employers do not like granting FMLA. If you have been wrongfully denied FMLA leave or have been fired for requesting leave, you should seek help from our Florida FMLA Lawyers at Whittel & Melton. It is not only unfair, but it is illegal for your employer to discriminate against you based on your need for medical leave.

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